Titans vs. Vikings: Tennessee Circles the Drain in Minneapolis

Nate Dunlevy@NateDunlevyGuest ColumnistOctober 7, 2012

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - OCTOBER 7: Chris Johnson #28 of the Tennessee Titans carries the ball during the fourth quarter of the game against the Minnesota Vikings on October 7, 2012 at Mall of America Field at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Vikings defeated the Titans 30-7. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

The Minnesota Vikings are markedly superior to the Tennessee Titans.

As if that fact wasn't already evident by their respective records entering the game, the 30-7 final score in favor of the Vikings certainly proved it.

Their fourth loss in five games has sent the Titans into free fall.

Losing to the Vikings was bad enough, but Minnesota's unchecked domination of the Titans on both sides of the ball has to sting.

In giving up at least 30 points for the fifth time in five games, the Titans gave up 175 yards on the ground while allowing Percy Harvin to pick up 108 yards receiving and two scores (one rushing, one passing).

Tennessee moved the ball early in the game, but stalled out inside the Vikings 40 as Matt Hasselbeck took a sack to end an early threat. A Chris Johnson fumble and a Hasselbeck pick would kill other drives in the first half, as the Titans never gained any offensive rhythm.

Two timely interceptions late in the second quarter and early in the third kept Tennessee in the game temporarily, but as it was unable to move the ball consistently, eventually the dam gave way and the Titans were washed away.

Once again, Johnson struggled on the ground to the tune of 15 carries for 24 yards, eerily close to what was predicted before the game.

Following Christian Ponder's second interception, the Vikings refused to be stopped. They put up a field goal and two touchdowns to put the game out of reach by the early fourth quarter.

The only good news is that the stench of this loss won't linger long.

The Titans have few remaining opportunities to get their season back on track. They have just four days to prepare for the Pittsburgh Steelers in a game that could end any reasonable playoff hopes that still remain in Tennessee.

Going forward, they have yet to solve any of their many defensive questions, and without Jake Locker to spark the offense, they struggle to generate yards or points. On the season, the team has been outscored by an almost unbelievable 93 points.

The questions are multiplying and the answers are dwindling. They have four days to set the season right before 2012 becomes a lost season for the Titans.